Older graphics aside, Thief 2 is a great game. Though I'm sure some sociology professor might decry the glorification of breaking into people's houses and stealing their stuff, there's no denying that it's a lot of fun.
I didn't have the opportunity to finish it when I was a kid. It was partly because I was afraid, and the game was too complex for my age. As an adult, I went back and finished the game last week. Thief II is a great game, especially with its story. Although the first and third games have the same mechanics as the second and provide the feeling of theft, they lag behind in terms of narrative. Secondly, it is a wonderfully enjoyable game to play with its medieval steampunk setting and the story of enslavement on which it is based.
The second top notch stealth action with improved level-design.
combat mechanics 7/10
Gameplay as ****: 10/10
Sounds & music 10/10
The final chord of Looking Glass.
For the sake of brevity and as a gesture of respect to the older audience (myself included), I think "Thief" and this sequel are pretty genre defining titles that have forever left a mark on the industry, even as that very industry seeks to undo more and more every year of what it built upon so many, many, many years ago. That all being said, these games are totally obsolete, even archaic and without outright saying anything negative to anyone SPECIFICALLY, if you enjoy them in this current year then it might be time to change your calendar and or start shopping for walkers.
Some kidding aside, Thief 2 is incredibly old. Its kind of like breaking out a very old jigsaw puzzle where some of the pieces are missing chunks, or have been covered up by stains, or are just simpy missing after years of putting the puzzle together and then placing the pieces back in the box. It isn't a bad game by any means, but it will require a bit of imagination to fill in the blanks, such as the A.I. being about as intelligent as a Dumbo rat skittering about a small room with the lights switched off. Or the sound design reeking of that ancient EAX reverb that sounded like two plumbers banging on your water pipes in your basement while you were one floor above them, and don't forget about the absolutely labyrinthine levels that are deceptivally tiny, but were made difficult to navigate on purpose so as to pad out the runtime.
I suppose their is also a "plot" to the Thief games, but since that was flushed down the toilet since the ill-fated 3rd installment, we can pretty much self-insert as Garrett at this point, and honestly isn't that what the original developers intended? I think so anyway. All the charm of Thief 2, very quickly fades away as soon as you realize how dull most of your objectives actually are. Your first "mission" is mostly a tutorial, but you can't even mess it up and your actual opponents a.k.a. mostly rent-a-guard's- are even less suspicious then they were in your first outing. Thief 2 has larger levels, which unfortunately totally breaks the A.I. routines, meaning they won't even do a lot of what made the original game so interesting. Gone are the days when guards would actually investigate odd noises, Garrett's tap-dancing rat shoes or torn tapestries.. instead we get guards turning on a dime back and forth on the same set path, which is about as easy to avoid as a comically thrown custard-pie. Quite simply it totally ruins the original's attempt at having knowledgeable (or at least its attempt at convincing you it was) artificial intelligence.
Texture-wise its much like the original game with some modest improvements. Lighting or lack of lighting is improved with a better sense of what constitutes patches of darkness for Garrett to slowly crouch or sneak in and the dialogue is just as well written, as their is more of it to begin with between many NPC's and other characters. The music is still probably some of the best in the stealth genre with a lot of building on eerie soundscapes that builds the further you explore and loot or the nearer you get to certain areas of levels. However, its the gameplay itself that has been usurped. Its not like picking up "Splinter Cell - Chaos Theory" or "Metal Gear Solid," which are honestly just better paced then any of the Thief games could've ever hoped to have been.
So in earnest, I've never gone beyond the first mission in Thief 2, the original is still pretty endearing, if not just kind of like peering into a time capsule of 1998, but the second mission in Thief 2 just completely grinds the game to a halt. This large warehouse, with coded padlock doors, and multiple entrances, and multiple objectives, and multiple enemies just irks me in a way that is well.. boring. Its boring to play and if its not compelling or interesting or isn't presenting me with new ideas? Then yes its going to be pretty darn difficult to care about progressing. Lets leave Thief as a reminder of what we strive for in stealth games, but it shouldn't be lauded in this current decade as something that can stand the test of time, otherwise we'd all still be running Windows 98 and personally I can't find a harddrive small enough to be bothered to try it anymore.
Tfix, for those who have heard of it, is mostly just a way to actually play the game beyond Windows 2000, and though its a great effort in many regards- it also permanently wipes out the original engine and its intricate quirks. Old dark isn't New Dark and vice versa. Their are just some things that are more interesting the more "pure" they remain. This would be like modding "Doom" to be a more modern FPS (oh wait they already did that). HD "mods" and texture packs don't really make the games less obnoxious or finicky to traverse and they certainly don't make it look much better by today's standards. Your mileage may vary with Thief 2, but that isn't a recommendation to bother playing it either.
Pretty solid game even nowadays, but quiet tricky for players who are not used to stealth games. Challenging game with a few mistakes, decent storyline and brilliant playability. The biggest problem for me was stereotype of the game, every mission was almost the same with the identical purpose. After long hours of doing the same thing again and again it was not that fun as in the beggining.
A great game in it's own right, Thief II unfortunately was a step back for the series. Sacrificing some of the mission variety present in The Dark Project rather than taking the time to improve it, what we're left with is a section of the original that's been polished to a fine sheen. The infiltration and sneaking aspects are at their finest, but at the same time while it's got a high gloss it's missing some of the charm of its predecessor. It feels like a part rather than a whole, like someone picking the chocolate chips out of a cookie. The narrative is choppy and incoherent and seems to just facilitate Garrett going to cool locations for levels rather than an over arching plot, and the aesthetics general feel cold and clean, missing some of the dank grime present in TDP.
A great game, and certainly one I recommend, but ultimately a bit of a let down in the grand scheme of things.
Was expecting a game similar to the first Thief, Ended up being one of the worst gaming experiences ever. It's more of a linear stealth puzzle game designed to make you waste as much time as possible. Cheesy gameplay, awful opponents, and non-period correct architecture/technology made it a really dull experience. The first few missions are fine, but once the "main antagonists" come in to play the game gets "Nintendo hard" and really wasn't fun. I see why this franchise failed.
SummaryOn the streets and rooftops of a darkened city, where the forces of a corrupt sheriff loom, it takes someone with a soft touch and even softer step to stay ahead of the law. For a master thief like Garrett, the choices are clear: profit or perish. Thief II: The Metal Age expands on the smash-hit "first-person sneaker", Thief: The Dark Pr...